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Clients win multiple awards for journalism and business

MDIF clients from around the world have been recognised for their pioneering journalism, investigative reporting and business management in recent awards.

They have scooped national, regional and international prizes for covering issues ranging from a women’s strike against stricter abortion laws in Poland to a jailed Salvadoran hitman guilty of an unforgivable sin in the eyes of his gang: being gay. They have also been recognised for achievements in the fields of reader engagement, podcasting and entrepreneurship.

Recent prizes include:

  • GK, Ecuador

Isabela Ponce won the Best Story or Journalistic Investigation award for her report Women who won against the desert in the Ortega y Gasset Journalism Awards, the most prestigious in Spanish-language journalism. The reporting describes the struggle of four women in a semi-desert area of ​​Ecuador to bring water to their crops. The jury highlighted “the detailed and precise description of the environment in which a story of women’s leadership takes place in a hostile environment. It brings an original approach, which highlights the preponderant role of women and the importance of community vision and generosity: the four protagonists, without knowing each other and without scientific training, work with the water of others in mind.”

GK was shortlisted for a Gabo Award for “Land of Resistance”, a collaborative project of 21 media from ten countries that investigated the persecution of environmental leaders. GK produced four in-depth reports and collected data for a regional database that covered 2,367 attacks against environmental defenders. Read the reports here, here, here and here.

  • Agora, Poland

Two projects received prestigious INMA Global Media Awards in the Best Social and PR Campaign category: Gazeta.pl with activities supporting LGBTQ+; and Gazeta Wyborcza for supporting the Polish Women’s Strike against a near-total abortion ban with a special solidarity subscription.

  • Daily Maverick and Food for Mzansi, South Africa

Daily Maverick received two honourable mentions in the INMA Global Media Awards in the category Best Idea to Encourage Reader Engagement, for its thriving webinar series, and Best Use of Print, for its surprise launch of a weekly print edition last year. In the same competition, Food for Mzansi received an honourable mention for Best Use of Audio for its chart-topping farming podcast and third place in the Best Idea to Grow Advertising Sales for a sponsored series on agri-finance with Standard Bank.

  • El Faro, El Salvador 

Working with Spain’s El País, El Faro won a prestigious Gabo Award for a series of reports examining the strip of land that connects Mexico to Central America – the ‘unknown border’ of the Americas and one of the most forgotten and violent places on the planet. Working for six months, 20 journalists used multiple formats to illustrate the lives and concerns of communities of indigenous people and settlers, highlighting issues such as illegal farming, poverty and inequality.

Unforgivable,” a short documentary co-produced by El Faro, won numerous awards and made it into the first round of the Oscars. It follows Geovanny, a ruthless hitman for the 18th Street gang, who serves his sentence in an evangelical Salvadoran prison, where he is guilty of an unforgivable sin under God and the gang: being gay. Recognition for the film included Best Short Documentary at the International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam, Best International Short Documentary Award at the Hot Docs Canadian International Documentary and selection by the International Documentary Association as one of the 10 best short films of 2020.

  • Josh Talks, India

Founder and Director Supriya Paul received an Amazon Smbhav Award in the category Women Entrepreneur of the Year.

  • Vijesti / TV VIjesti, Montenegro

Marijana Bojanic, CEO of Vijesti and its sister media company TV VIjesti, was named best small business manager of 2020 by the Association of Managers of Montenegro, the country’s most prestigious business awards.

Vijesti journalist Svetlana Mandić received an award for the best story on the green / sustainable economy from the Network and Advocacy for Green Economy, an EU-financed regional project.

  • El Periódico, Guatemala

After 25 years of championing transparency and accountability in Guatemala, the daily El Periódico was awarded the King of Spain International Journalism Award for Outstanding Media in Ibero-America. The jury agreed on the value of the “tireless work of reporting and investigative journalism for which its director and team have suffered attacks, persecutions, smear campaigns and even commercial blockades”.

  • Petit Press, Slovakia

Petit Press, publisher of SME and more than 35 other titles and news portals, scooped four prizes at the Journalism Awards 2020 in the categories of Investigative and Analytical Contribution, Interview, Solutions Journalism and Open Society Award. The company’s team received a total of 14 nominations.

  • El Búho, Peru

El Búho was part of a team that produced “The Pandemic Records”, winner of the National Journalism Award in the Regional category. The project tackled corruption and strengthened accountability and transparency in public purchases during the health crisis. El Búho was also a finalist in this category with two other entries: a report on femicide and a documentary on deaths related to Covid-19.

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